Former Republican State Sen. Jack Martins and Democratic Nassau Legis. Laura Curran, both candidates for Nassau County executive, are trading charges that they misused campaign Twitter accounts to promote government events and actions.
Curran, of Baldwin, held a news conference Tuesday calling on Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano to lobby the White House and Congress against President Donald Trump’s proposal to eliminate federal deductions for state and local taxes.
The news conference was promoted in emails on county letterhead, organized by a county legislative employee and Curran stood behind a lectern with the county seal.
Later in the day, Curran used her @LauraCurran2017 county executive campaign Twitter account to share quotes she delivered at the news conference and to retweet Newsday’s coverage of the event.
Curran has called for eliminating most taxpayer-funded government mailers and fliers, which she said are largely political. She has been particularly critical of mailers sent by Mangano and Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves (R-East Meadow).
“Laura Curran owes the taxpayers of Nassau County an apology and a check to reimburse the county for her staff’s time and use of county assets,” said Martins spokesman E. O’Brien Murray. “She is exactly what Nassau County taxpayers are tired of — politicians using their office for personal gain.”
The Curran campaign said Tuesday’s event was strictly governmental and that the tweets occurred after the news conference at no expense to taxpayers.
Curran’s campaign provided Newsday with nearly a dozen tweets sent during Martins’ unsuccessful campaign for Congress last year in which he promoted state senate events and legislation.
One of the tweets, from the @MartinsNY3 campaign account, highlighted a Senate bill Martins introduced to defund state and city college campus organizations that engage in hate speech. Other tweets promoted senate events at which members of the public could dispose of unwanted medication.
“Like any typical career politician, Jack Martins is hurling misinformed and hypocritical attacks,” said Curran campaign spokesman Philip Shulman. “Instead of focusing on solving Nassau’s problems, Martins is trying to score cheap political points without any interest in the facts.”
Murray said Martins’ tweets were different, as they covered topics already in the public domain and community events the senator had attended for years.